• Age of Conan:
    • Two new level 80 group instances in the imperial city of Paikang (Khitai) are available: The Ai District and the T’ian’an District.
      Source: Update Notes 2.2 – 4th of May
    • To celebrate the 3-year anniversary of AoC, subscribers received free potions which boost PvE, PvP and AA (Alternative Advancement) experience. Members recruiting their friends to join AoC received 50% additional game-time. Besides these, former players got their account open for free play until the end of May. And finally, anyone could take part to a contest to receive one of these 3 prizes:
      • Prize 1: “Age of Conan” + its expansion “Rise of the Godslayer” (both digital downloads)
      • Prize 2: “Rise of the Godslayer” (digital download) + 30 days free game time
      • Prize 3: 60 days free game time + Loyal Kappa pet

      Source 1: community.ageofconan.com – 3-Year Anniversary! Join the Celebration!
      Source 2: forums-eu.ageofconan.com – Age of Conan Three Year Anniversary Sweepstakes

    • Funcom will soon merge all servers having the same rule-set thanks to the new technology of the Dreamworld engine. The goal is that all PvE players play together. Ditto for the PvP players and for the Blood and Glory (hardcore PvP). However, EU and US will still be split.
      Source: community.ageofconan.com – Monthly Development Update – May 2011
    • This Summer, the game will be renamed “Age of Conan: Unrated” and will embrace the freemium business model. Players will be given “the opportunity to choose whether they want to play for free or become premium subscribers”. In addition, there will be an in-game store “where both free players and premium subscribers can purchase exclusive content such as weaponry and mounts”. The Blood and Glory (hardcore PvP) should be available in the same time or shortly later. Free-to-play FAQ Free and Premium Content Overview
      Source 1: funcom.com – Age of Conan goes FREE and UNRATED
      Source 2: community.ageofconan.com – Monthly Development Update – May 2011
    • Then, in Autumn, there will also be the Savage Coast of Turan, a movie tie-in adventure pack where players will “help Artus unravel the conspiracy and plots surrounding the city of Ardashir in Turan. The pack adds all new encounters, the massive new area of Ardashir, new dungeons and raids as well as new armor sets and monsters that moviegoers can already observe in the recently released theatrical movie trailer”. Concept arts of Ardashir and Turan can be downloaded here.
      Source 1: community.ageofconan.com – Monthly Development Update – May 2011
      Source 2: community.ageofconan.com – Age of Conan to feature content from upcoming Conan the Barbarian movie
    • And, finally, House of Crom is still in the pipeline although it has no release date yet.
      Source: community.ageofconan.com – Monthly Development Update – May 2011
  • Bloodline Champions: A new class called the Grimrog has been presented. This “is a combined Melee and Healer”. See the trailer.
  • Changes in Funcom’s management staff:Gerhard Florin, Executive Vice President of Publishing at Electronic Arts from 2006 until the end of 2010, presented for election as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Funcom. Gerhard Florin is expected to “contribute significantly to extending Funcom’s strategic and business competence in the gaming segment” and to “make important contributions to the future development of the Company both in strategy, operations, marketing and sales”. Besides working for EA from 1996 to 2010, Gerhard Florin “held various positions at BMG, the global music division of Bertelsmann AG, and served as a Consultant of McKinsey”. “Mr. Florin holds Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Economics from the University of Augsburg, Germany.”The current Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Torleif Ahlsand, will become Vice President of the Supervisory Board.”Long-term Supervisory Board member Frank Sagnier will at the same time get a broader role in the company and transfer to the Management Board, where his insight and competence from many years as head of EA online publishing in EU will contribute to reaching the strategic goals of the company. Mr. Sagnier will focus primarily on the Free-to-Play initiatives of the Company.” Source


GAME INFORMATION

  • Craig Morrison from Age of Conan seems to confirm TSW will require a subscription fee. Switching to the free-to-play business model only comes at a certain stage in the life cycle of an MMO. Source
  • Funcom published its financial report of the first quarter 2011 here. It is explained that “The Secret World reached a major milestone in May, as planned, as the game entered the phase of limited external beta testing.” “The focus of the development is on content extension and role playing systems extension.” “The technology supporting The Secret World is well tested and stable, and the technology risk related to The Secret World is significantly lower than for Age of Conan before launch.” Besides this, it is said the TSW community counts more than 400,000 members.
  • As the Dreamworld technology now allows Funcom to merge all Age of Conan’s servers having the same rule-set, one can speculate that all TSW’s PvE players will be together on a huge server and the same will happen for the PvP players. However, it seems EU and US will still be split. Source: community.ageofconan.com – Monthly Development Update – May 2011

GENERAL INFORMATION

  • The [Info] What are the factions all about? thread made by Cler1c and Vengeful-frog now offers videos presenting the factions: Dragon video, Illuminati video and Templar video. Like the texts added in April, these videos only gather information from Funcom’s websites and from interviews/presentations with Ragnar Tørnquist. The Illuminati song “Viola Harmony – Audio Reaction” is fanmade by Toroto (Toroto92 in YouTube) while the Templar song “Silver Lining” is fanmade by Ravenlock. It seems no broadly approved Dragon fanmade song exists so far. [Info] What are the factions all about?
  • Darkkar.com is a blog created by Darkkar and his co-leader. They “will post updates for many different games [including The Secret World] and other tech stuff”. This blog is mainly made for Envy’s members but anyone can read it. Announcement darkkar.com


CABALS


CABALS


CABALS

  • The Codex is the new name of Grey Razor, led by BrandFrontier and Cyphre (don’t confuse with Cypher who is Illuminati!). This cabal focuses on PvE and RP although the other parts of the game will also be enjoyed. It is a founding father of the Templar Alliance. Announcement
  • Envy‘s leader Darkkar explained in a PM on 19th May 2011 that the cabal is “still alive but on hold in terms of recruiting until we get closer to [public] beta”. Announcement Envy’s blog